Midnight Madness on Oct. 30, welcomed the new basketball season, the new men’s team coach Paul Mills and the newly designed logo of the ORU mascot. During the event, ORU athletics director Mike Carter and University President William M. Wilson pulled open the curtains on the new floor.
“ORU is recognized as a world class academic and athletic institution dedicated to life change and global impact,” said Carter. “It is critical that the visual elements which reflect the institution’s image coincide with the forward momentum of this university.”
The announcement confirmed that the Golden Eagle would remain the university’s mascot, but that the image would be changed. The previous Eli, designed by a former Disney graphic design artist was adopted in 1993. The modern logo, wearing an identical color scheme, was created in partnership with Hampton Creative, a local Tulsa Advertising Agency.
Hampton Creative played a major role in the athletic department’s 2017-2018 slogan “Rise Up” creating the art, fonts and vision across all of the athletic platforms offered at ORU.
“We both discussed [the idea] together. There were lots of things on the table at the moment,” said Hampton Creative founder Johnie Hampton. “We felt like the power in ‘Rise Up’ didn’t really match with the aesthetics and the feeling behind the current Eli.”
Hampton, a 1991 graduate of ORU, and his company have been in partnership with the university for more than 20 years.
He believes that the new design is more adaptable, saying that his office wall was covered ceiling to floor with Golden Eagle mascots to be certain that ORU’s would be original and one hundred percent unique.
“There were four designers on our team. They all spent hours and did research on what is going on in athletics all over the U.S.,” said Hampton. “All four of them submitted designs for Eli, and only one surfaced as the winner and that’s the one that ORU went with.”
Hampton serves currently as the chair of the alumni board at the university, and describes his company as a trusted partner of the university.
ORU retailers, the campus bookstore and all sports teams and players will now be sporting the new brand.
“Nothing better to say that we’ve changed, than to really change,” Hampton said.